on June 18, 2012
Our self catering accommodation in the village of Dunstan about a mile from Craster was very helpfully located about 4 doors away from a lively pub, the Cottage Inn. The front of the pub is indeed very attractive looking comprising of a line of traditional whitewashed cottages, although the back of the premises has been extended more than once and is beyond recognition of its original form. There is a lovely looking huge beer garden to the end of the pub, meaning it is a great place for families to linger and have lunch. The menu looked good, although some of the dishes turned out a little beige and deep fried for my liking. Many people were complementary of the food and very little remained on the plate. There looked to be a good choice of meals and the place is obviously very popular for food. There are also 4 real ales on tap, and our cider drinking friend was happy going through the range of flavoured ciders on offer. It is a little unfair of me to criticise as we were there during the Soccer European Cup, but they run out of some of the beers. I imagine we were there during a busy period as the Cottage Inn were offering pints for £2.50 as well as TV screens showing the England match. Seating isn't entirely comfortable as it comprises either of low leather sofas, or those rather uncomfortable circular bucket seats beloved in hotel reception areas, and designed to be usable for about 10 minutes. There is also a TV room area, which seems to be particularly popular with football fans. The Cottage Inn is obviously quite the community pub, as it has both quiz and bingo nights on a regular basis. The quiz night is quite an undertaking with 100 questions and 20 picture rounds and a break for free soup and a bread roll. We were pleased to come 4th although only the top two teams won a prize. It was good fun for the £1 entry fee and very well organised. Food was also offered on the evening of our second visit when the England soccer match was on - I appreciated the kind thought although was too full to take them up on the free offer. Overall, we felt very comfortable in the Cottage Inn in Dunstan, with the locals being particularly friendly. Again, I'm guessing we chose an unusual time to visit but a couple of the staff seemed a little flustered with the crowds. I can recommend the Cottage Inn as an alternative to the Jolly Fisherman in Craster itself.
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